People-to-people Contact Vital For Regional Connectivity: Experts

People-to-people contact vital for regional connectivity: Experts

LAHORE, (Pakistan Point News - APP - 10th Nov, 2016 ) : Speakers at the policy dialogue on the international conference on "Inter-Regional Connectivity: South Asia and Central Asia" have agreed to enhance people-to-people contact and institutional collaborations of Asian states to promote much-needed inter-regional as well as intra-regional connectivity. The second day of policy dialogue was chaired by GCU Dean Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Prof Dr Tahir Kamran, while Ching Chang from Society for Strategic Studies China, Dr Sinderpal Singh from Nanyang Technological University Singapore, Jonathan Fulton from Zayed University, UAE, Dr Bilveer Singh, Dr Martin Hribek, Dr Sinderpal Singh and Ajith Balasooriya and a large number other foreign delegates from nine different countries were also present.

The speakers strongly recommended to the policy makers of South Asia and Central Asia states that benefits of geo-economics are immense so economic affairs should take precedence over bilateral disputes between the states, and a permanent think-tank is established where academicians and researchers could debate on the emerging issues of inter-regional connectivity. The speakers also discussed the need for redefining the whole idea of conventional sovereignty and also explored the social, political and dimensions of interregional connectivity.

Prof Dr Tahir Kamran said that there was a need for effective and joint measures by the states to counter ethnic hostilities and religious extremism which figure strongly in the limited progress on inter regional connectivity till date. The conference chairman, Prof Dr Khalid Manzoor Butt, said that there was a strong realization among the Central Asian and South Asian states for inter-regional economic cooperation, and for the realization of this goal, China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) could be effectively exploited to create an integrative line between Pakistan and Central Asian states particularly Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Kyrgyzstan via Afghanistan to engage and involve these republics into this profit seeking venture to create an environment for the comprehensive, sustainable and uniform progress for peace and stability of the whole region.

Ching Chgang said that South Asia itself contains serious strategic unbalance. "India deeply suspects China's plan of 'One Belt One Road' and refuses to cooperate even in literal or oral way. The main reason is not because India still memorizes the pain caused by 1962 war, but also strongly related to the 'unbalance status quo' created by India which would be bound to be destroyed by China's plan," he said. Dr Sinderpal Singh said that sovereignty and the integrity of territorial borders have been core concerns for the post-colonial states since their inception as independent nation states. Earlier, as many as 32 research papers were presented at the three technical sessions of the conference.